I can’t tell you what a complete and utter gift it was – after months and months of historical intrigue and drama – to receive this wonderfully hilarious, light-hearted, well-written story that had me laughing out loud. In fact, I can’t think of another book I’ve received this year that would make a better movie.
We are brought into the lives of Jessica Wild-Wainwright and Max Wainwright, a couple who has been married for almost a year; they’re still in the throes of extreme bliss, giggles, eye-winks, and loving smirks, and they are having a wonderful evening dining with Jessica’s mother, Esther, and her fiancé Chester, who runs Jarvis Private Banking which is the largest client of Max and Jessica’s advertising firm. The dinner is going very well, as the two couples talk about what makes the ideal wife and/or husband. Unfortunately…the conversation becomes hard for Jessica to follow when her blackmailer, Hugh, sends her a text message demanding even more money from her so that he will remain silent and not tell Jessica’s husband, Max, that he shared a kiss with her on a drunken night long ago.
To put it mildly, Jessica has had a very hard time as of late. A while back she began her career at Milton Advertising and fell in love with Max while on the job. She also, through a variety of fanciful stories, ended up being the beneficiary of a kind woman’s estate who left Jessica four million pounds, and a stately home outside of London. Now, of course, this gift was given to Jessica in the hopes that she would marry the woman’s son. But…that didn’t happen. So, Jessica embarked on her life with Max and deposited the huge sum of money into her bank account and tried to forget about it.
Now Jessica feels that she needs to be the ideal wife for her wonderful husband. She feels so guilty about a kiss that happened when they were only engaged, that all she can think of is the fact that she just doesn’t deserve her wonderful, perfect, noble husband. Her first act as the ideal wife comes one evening after she has taken a cooking course in order to make food that won’t poison her loving hubby. Racing home, she heats up the meal in the oven, and seductively takes her place on the bed and waits for her hard-working, wonderful man to come home. The conclusion of this well-thought-out plan was a burned dinner, deep scratches from the thorny roses, and a husband with a broken leg.
As Max is sitting in the hospital recuperating, Jessica must take on the trials and tribulations of the world crumbling around her. Her mother’s fiancé Chester decides that he wants an audit of their advertising firm done for a national campaign he wants to run, so Jessica has to put up with a surly auditor that seems to be only interested in finding the flaws of her husband’s company so he can bury it. She also has to deal with her best friend Helen who seems to only want men for as long as they don’t want her; then, when they commit, she gets bored and walks away. Her mother, Esther, is also a real pain in Jessica’s life, especially when she stumbles across the fact that Mom has entered the world of Facebook and brought someone from their past right to their front door. On top of everything else, Jessica also must deal with the Russian Mafia, and a nurse at the hospital who wants nothing more than to steal Max right out from under Jessica’s nose.
Every single aspect of this book is absolutely hysterical. Just when you think you understand the premise, or what somebody’s up to, the next page offers a whole new story that ties together these fantastically written characters who, without a doubt, I would love to see up on the “big screen.” Fun! Fun! Fun! And, in the end, the perfect lesson is taught in this book: That people are truly imperfect, and that’s what makes them so perfect!